United States-based long jumper, Joseph Edafiadhe, says he has no regret missing the ticket to represent Team Nigeria in this year’s World Athletics Championships in Eugene, Oregon. He won the men’s long jump gold at the recently concluded National Trials in Benin City, Edo State.
Edafiadhe, who was among foreign-based stars, who participated in the AFN’s national trials for Oregon 2022 World Championships and the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham, England, jumped 7.84 metres to win the gold at the Samuel Ogbemudia Stadium, Benin City.
Although he won, his jump was short of the 8.22 metres standard set by the AFN for male jumpers to be part of the party in Oregon.
Speaking with told The Guardian shortly after his victory, Edafiadhe stated that he would continue to put in his best for the country in subsequent championships.
Before he relocated to the United States a few years ago, the Delta State-born Edafiadhe was the commander-in-chief in African youth athletics.
Between 2011 and 2013, he captured two gold medals for Nigeria, including the African Youth Athletics Championships (AYAC) held in Warri. He was also a gold medallist at the West Africa University Games held in Port Harcourt, Rivers State in 2018.
To Edafiadhe, the failure to pick a ticket to Oregon 2022 World Championships won’t discourage him from pursuing a brighter career in the United States.
The AFN, on Tuesday, named 22 athletes for the World Athletics Championships, which hold from July 15 to 25 in Eugene, Oregon.
Among them are the ‘new generation’ of track and field stars in Nigeria, including Favour Ashe, who is Nigeria’s fastest man, reigning World U20 200m champion Udodi Onwuzurike and reigning African Games champion, Raymond Ekevwo. They will compete in the 100m event.
Godson Brume and Usheoritse Ese Itsekiri will compete in the 4x100m relay with the three athletes listed for the 100m event.
The new national 400m hurdles record holder, Ezekiel Nathaniel, will make his debut in Oregon, same as World U20 champion, Imaobong Nse Uko, who will compete in the 400m event and the 4x400m mixed relay.
Also debuting at Oregon 2022 championships is national triple jump champion and record holder, Ruth Usoro, who will compete in both the long and triple jump events.